Plot: What’s it about?
An interesting look at the CIA as we follow Joe Turner, (Robert Redford) a man who reads books for the “Company”…CIA to you non spy types. Turner goes out for lunch and when he returns he finds everyone at his section murdered. Not exactly a field agent, he nervously calls to find a way to be “brought in” by the agency but is not sure whom he can trust. On the run and nowhere to hide he realizes he is being hunted but by whom, the assassins…or by his own side. Desperate for a place to rest and think things out he kidnaps a woman played by Faye Dunaway (Bonnie and Clyde) and uses her apartment. After hearing his unbelievable story she eventually “agrees”…hey it’s Robert Redford…to help him find the answers he is looking for. Staying one step…and sometimes less…ahead of a work for the highest bidder assassin, (Max Von Sydow) Turner starts to uncover a not so surprising plot…compared to the real life doings of the CIA and other government agencies. Using his ace in the hole…watch the movie…Redford turns the tables on the “Company”…or does he?
I enjoyed this movie although I’ve seen it many times…this is the first on DVD…especially because of the end where Turner and the deputy director Higgins (Cliff Robertson…PT109) discuss the agenda of the CIA. Turner is shocked by the contingencies developed by the CIA but Higgins bluntly puts it all on the table…if you think we were in the Gulf War because Saddam picked on a helpless neighbor and we must come to the aid of the downtrodden (Kuwait)…guess again. There is an important question to be answered by all of us…do the ends justify the means and does art (this movie) imitate life?
Video: How does it look?
Widescreen version only but it is 16:9 Enhanced. Great transfer especially since the original is nearly 25 years old.
Audio: How does it sound?
The DVD keeper case lists 5.1 Digital Dolby but just like the spy business…don’t believe everything you see and don’t hear. The 5.1 is nearly non-existent during the entire movie. The extremely poor quality of the sound track brings unnecessary criticism to a fine movie that would have been accepted in Dolby Surround only mainly because of its age.
Supplements: What are the extras?
One theatrical trailer only and not one single solitary miniscule sign of another extra feature to be seen by even the most detailed eye…unless I missed it…I don’t think so.